One of the things I love about the beginning of each New Year is how everyone stops to consider their priorities and how they intend to live them out in the coming 12 months. As a pastor I try to take advantage of that season with a teaching that will help people make true life-changing commitments. The unfortunate part of New Year’s ponderings is that it comes but once a year. We tend to overlook the power of daily choices regarding our priorities. We underestimate the importance of what we do each day and overestimate the importance of what we do in a week or a month or a year. The sad result is that we often squander our days waiting for some big moment to move us. The success of living our priorities on our Life Palette is found in our daily choices. We win or lose each day by the way we choose.
Power Comes From Discipline
This centers around two things God uses to paint our lives as a masterpiece: decisions and discipline. Each is very different. Many people make a New Year’s resolution to lose weight—a decision. However, when asked if they are making plans to give up their favorite food or dessert, they’re not quite ready to do that. They lack discipline.
There is incredible power in a simple decision, but it must be in line with the priorities of your Life Palette. Most people grossly underestimate the cost of making a decision that goes against a priority. Discipline, too, is an incredible gift God has given you to help you succeed, but following through on the daily disciplines necessary to live out the priorities of your Life Palette is not easy.
Keep Your Eye On The Prize
Trophies are not handed out at the beginning of a race. They come at the finish line. Finishing the race is a result of living by your priorities every day. Paul said in 2 Timothy 4:7: “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful.” One of the tools for helping you finish the race is to keep your priorities in place—and live by them every day. At the end of each day, ask yourself, “How did I do in living out the priorities that I’ve prayerfully determined?” Make a decision to eliminate anything that goes against your priorities. Be brutal. You must work daily on your Life Palette to assure you live according to the priorities God has set before you. When you are tired and weary, remember the trophy at the finish line: a masterpiece. His masterpiece.
Next Steps To Receive Your Trophy :
How are your daily choices helping or hurting you in living out your priorities? What new choices do you need to make to live out your priorities on your Life Palette.
(Adapted from chapter 5 of my book Life Palette, get your signed copy today and let 2014 be the year you begin living as the masterpiece God created you to be!)